Hello everyone. I'm new here, but suspect I may be a regular soon. I come from a swimming pool family. My father and brother run a swimming pool construction company in South Texas, and I spent my high school years cleaning swimming pools for clients on a weekly basis. So I've got some experience, but quite frankly, it's been in my past for quite some time now, as I didn't stick to the family business.
So, now I own a house in Troy IL that has an in ground octagon shaped 20'x30' vinyl liner pool that is 4 ft deep on each end, and 6ft in the center. I'm roughly calculating about 22,500 gallons of water. In 2007, the neighbor and previous owner built identical pools by the same builder at the same time, and presumably got some sort of deal. This builder sold them on a Pool Frog XL mineral/chlorine system. Both my neighbor and previous owner love the Frog, follow the exact same regimen, and think I should use it too now that I own one of the pools in the pair. However, neither of them own a water test kit of any kind, so I don't think they really know what they are talking about. On the other hand, whatever they having been doing must have worked ok, the pool looked nice, and in 8 years have only had 1 green pool between them.
We bought the house in October, and the previous owner helped me close it. We followed his procedure with his chemicals because he already bought them and was giving them to me. We dumped in a bottle of polyquat 60, put 5 bags of shock in, and let the pump run for 24 hours before draining below the skimmer and putting the cover on.
It's been getting warm here for a while, and the thought of opening was on my mind, but I thought "well it's still too cold to swim, so why worry?". I found this forum when researching the Pool Frog system, and decided with pool water temps of 65 degrees, I need to open this weekend.
Before I found this site, I had told my neighbor to go to the pool company and get me whatever he was using, minus the chlorine pacs for the frog. I had a couple leftover from last year, and I had a feeling I could just buy tablets and shove them back in the bacpac, so I was going to do that. But after he had already gotten me $320 worth of mineral packs, algecide, metal removers, and "pool magic", I realized I don't want to stick with the Frog method forever.
Now I'm debating whether to attempt to contact this pool company and try to get my money back on the mineral pack and anything else that I can, and just following the TFP method right from the beginning.
The pool company's opening procedure says to remove the cover, clean out any debris, fill up the pool, get the pump and filter running, then add polyquat 60, 5 bags of shock, and run pump for 24 hours, then add metal magic.
My thought is that I should remove cover, clean debris, get pump/filter running. I plan to test the water the night before (it's already nearly full enough from rain, I shouldn't have to add any water) and then once the pump is running I can shock and/or adjust ph as necessary.
My question is whether I should use any of this stuff I got from the pool company, or just try to return it all and get better stuff elsewhere. The shock is a dichlor type that's going to add CYA. I have yet to test my water, and I may well need to raise my CYA, so using this stuff may be fine. But I won't know for sure yet until I test the water when I get my Taylor K2006 on Friday. So, if my CYA is low enough, is it safe to use this shock? Should I even be shocking it right off the bat if the water is already pretty clear?
Regarding the mineral pack, I'm tempted to use it just to see what it does to the water, and run the Frog system as it was designed for a bit just to see how I like it and how my CYA levels go through a summer. Then maybe next year, I can skip the mineral pack and just run chlorine, and see how it compares. Is that worth my $150 I paid for this dang mineral pack? I see I could have save myself about $50 by getting one on doney's website, but even at that price it's still pretty costly. Plus, it seems to be like I wouldn't need a bottle of metal magic if I wasn't putting metal in my water with the mineral pack.
And the polyquat 60 stuff...that seems to be useful at closing, but perhaps not at opening of the pool. Maybe I'll just keep my bottles of that in my supply room for the next year or two. It should stay good enough i assume, right?
Thanks all, sorry for the long post, but I thought details were important.
IG Vinyl liner
Sand filter - Pentair Tagelus TA60D
Pentair Challenger CFII N1 1.5A
Frog XL Mineral/Chlorinator - soon to gone probably
Water source is hard water municipal and rain.